The offseason attrition continued for Nebraska basketball on Saturday afternoon as Charlie Easley announced on Twitter that he is transferring to South Dakota State.
Thank you Nebraska pic.twitter.com/O9cS83M7Ep
— Charlie Easley (@CharlieEasley4) April 18, 2020
Easley walked on at Nebraska after a standout career at Lincoln Pius X and first earned his way into the rotation and then onto scholarship for the spring semester.
The 6-foot-1 guard played in 28 games with four starts as a true freshman. He averaged 1.9 points and 1.0 rebound in 11.6 minutes per game overall and bumped that up to 2.4 points and 1.3 rebounds in 13.8 minutes per game in Big Ten play. However, the 3-point shot—one of his biggest strengths in high school—never materialized at Nebraska as he shot just 5-of-30 (16.7%) on the season.
Even without putting up big numbers offensively, Easley became a fan favorite as a local kid who made hustle play after hustle play while he was on the court, from boxing out bigger players to diving on the floor for loose balls to taking charges.
Easley scored a season-high eight points against Indiana in January, shooting 2-of-3 from deep and adding a pair of free throws in 16 minutes. He also had a season-high three steals in that game, which he matched a few games later against Michigan. He had seven points and a season-high three assists in 15 minutes at Iowa and closed out the regular season with six points and a season-high six rebounds in a season-high 33 minutes at Minnesota.
“We loved having Charlie as part of our program over the last year,” Coach Fred Hoiberg said in a release. “He worked hard to earn a scholarship for the spring semester and took advantage of the opportunity to earn playing time last season. That put Charlie in a position where he can be a significant contributor for a program. I thank Charlie for his contributions and everyone in our program wishes him the best in the future.”
Easley was likely going to return to walk-on status moving forward as the Nebraska staff continues to look to fill its last open scholarship for 2020-21.
As a senior at Pius, Easley led the Thunderbolts to the Class B state championship while averaging 23.3 points, 6.2 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 3.1 steals while shooting 51% from the field, 45% from 3 and 86% from the free-throw line. The only Division I scholarship Easley received came from The Citadel, but he did receive interest from Summit League schools and others before committing to Nebraska as a walk-on.
Easley will receive a scholarship at South Dakota State and will become the third Nebraska native on the roster, joining former Winnebago standout David Wingett and Aurora alumnus Baylor Scheierman. Easley and Scheierman played together in high school during the spring and summer for the Omaha Sports Academy Crusaders.
Easley’s departure leaves Nebraska with two walk-ons, Jace Piatkowski and Bret Porter, both of whom redshirted this season. Hoiberg and his staff completely flipped the backcourt with departures from Haanif Cheatham, Cam Mack, Dachon Burke Jr., Jervay Green and now Easley and the additions of Kobe Webster, Kobe King, Trey McGowens and Teddy Allen as well as Dalano Banton coming off his redshirt season.
Jacob is in his third year with Hail Varsity covering Husker athletics. He has also written extensively for SB Nation’s Bright Side of the Sun and The Creightonian. His love of basketball can best be described as an obsession and if you need to find him, he’s probably in a gym somewhere watching, coaching or playing hoops.